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Wednesday, 20 August 2014 12:43

Study Shows 10 Common Cancers Associated With Obesity

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Obesity epidemic is a global health concern. A new study finds a link between obesity and 10 common cancers.

The US statistics are:

  • More than 69% of adults aged 20 years or over are overweight or obese.
  • Around 76.8 million adults are obese
  • Obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents over the past 3 decades

That over weight and obesity increase the risk of major chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke, should be a general knowledge by now.

Even more debilitating diseases like cancer have been found to be associated with obesity. A latest large scale study conducted at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, which the authors describe as the largest study of its kind to assess the link between body mass index (BMI) and cancer, not only reaffirmed obesity's link with cancer but also showed that the cancers associated with obesity include 10 very common types like those of uterus, gallbladder and kidney.

The study involved assessing the data from general practitioner records found in the UK's Clinical Practice Research Datalink..Out of this huge pool of data, the researcher identified 5.24 million people aged 16 or over who were free of cancer and had been monitored for an average of 7.5 years.

The research team analyzed their BMI and calculated their risk of developing 22 of the most common cancers, which they say accounts for 90% of all cancers diagnosed in the UK.
Results of the analysis revealed that 166,955 participants developed one of the 22 cancers during the 7.5-year follow-up. BMI was found to be linked to the development of 17 out of these 22 cancers, and the link was particularly strong for 10 of these cancers.

They found that every 5 kg/m2 increase in BMI was associated with a higher risk of the following cancers:

  • Womb (62% increased risk)
  • Gallbladder (31% increased risk)
  • Kidney (25% increased risk)
  • Cervical (10% increased risk)
  • Thyroid (9% increased risk)
  • Leukemia (9% increased risk)

The effects of BMI were found to be different for different types of cancers.

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